How can a believer find comfort after the death of a parent?

The death of a parent is heartbreaking. Whether expected or unexpected it can leave us feeling lonely and lost. It is hard to know what to do when we are accustomed to turning to our parents for comfort and advice. In such times we must turn to God who is the ultimate comforter.

Grieving is normal and an important part of the healing after losing a parent. Throughout the Bible there are many examples of people mourning the loss of a loved one. In fact, Jesus wept when His friend Lazarus died and many wept when Jesus died (John 11:35; Luke 23:27). Interestingly, Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and later was Himself raised from the dead (John 11; Matthew 28:5–7).

Thus, while there is a time for mourning there will also be a time for rejoicing. If our parent is a believer, we have hope that we will see them again in Heaven. As believers we know that Christ has overcome death and by putting our faith in Him we also can overcome it (John 11:25). We can be at peace knowing that our parents are no longer suffering, but are in the presence of God.

If we are unsure of our parent's salvation, the loss can be harder to accept. Nonetheless, we can still find comfort in God. As our heavenly Father He will take care of us (2 Corinthians 1:3–4). We may not understand why our loved one died, but we can trust that God's ways are just. If our parent repented in their final hours, then God would be just to forgive them. In addition, other believers can support us as our spiritual family. We can have hope knowing that the pain of our loss will only be temporary. "He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away" (Revelation 21:4).

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